Getting Around in Phuket

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Getting Around in Phuket Thailand is easy! Most of the beach resorts are small enough to walk around and most hotels are located close to the beach, restaurants and shopping areas. However, if you feel like doing a little exploring around the island but your hotel is not on one of the main beaches, there are a number of transport options for you to choose from, including public buses, which are air-conditioned “micro” buses that service the Phuket Town area. And then there’s private bus services, known as “Songthaew”. But these blue pick-up trucks, decked with bench seats and a cover, run along set routes, but will stop anywhere along the way to drop off or pick up passengers. Songthaew buses leave from Ranong Road and serve most of the island with a regular service, travelling between the hub at Phuket Town and the destination.

Typically, but not always, the destination is written in English on a sign on the side of the bus. A number of pink Songthaew buses also run on two routes from Phuket City to Big C and Tesco, and Super Cheap to Chaofa Road. If the bus is moving, it is necessary to wave at the driver to signal him or her to stop and allow new passengers to get on. Payment is made to the driver when disembarking the bus. To get off, signal the driver by ringing the bell. The fare is typically between 15 to 35 thai baht for a designated route depending on the distance travelled.

There are few metered taxis operating on the island, and can generally be found outside of Phuket airport to the right of the main terminal building. Before starting any journey it is suggested to try and insist the fare meter be turned on if it is not switched on already. If this is not possible, it may be necessary to negotiate a fare. For shorter trips in and around Phuket Town, you may want to consider a motorbike taxi – which costs about 20 baht per person, depending on the distance. For those in the mood for a little island hopping, speedboats or long tail boats are also available from Chalong Bay pier or Rawai beach in the south of the island. Individual tickets may be purchased or an entire boat may be chartered. Tickets can be arranged on arrival or as part of a package from a travel agent in Phuket.

There are many car rental services on Phuket. Cars or jeeps can be rented at the airport, in Phuket Town, and at most of the more popular beaches. Do keep in mind that while most international car rental agencies will offer you a full-overage insurance, while some local companies may or may not. Another option would be to rent a bike, but for around 150 to 300 baht per day you can hire your own 100-150cc motorbike, which will typically require you to leave your passport as a deposit.

Be sure to inspect bikes before rental, put on a helmet, and drive with extreme caution as rental motorbikes are not normally insured and accidents are frequent. Regardless, inspect rental vehicles prior to rental and drive with caution, particularly as traffic in Thailand can be quite confusing. Motorcycles can be rented from rental agencies located on Rasada Road or from different operators at various beaches.

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Sota Sato says:

what is the route of the blue bus?

Travel Phiphi says:

Thailand : The Land Of Smile !!!

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